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Apr 26, 2004

The University of Colorado volleyball team wrapped up the 2004 spring season on a high note by claiming the team title at the Marquette Invitational on April 24 in Milwaukee.

Playing a best 2-out-of-3, CU swept Purdue, Northwestern, Wisconsin-Green Bay, DePaul and the host Golden Eagles to go 10-0 in  tournament games. Colorado, Northwestern and Wisconsin-Green Bay were all 2003 NCAA Tournament participants.

"We had a great weekend," junior-to-be Nicole Carr said. "Everyone was connecting really well with the setters. Our new quicker offense was something that we've worked alot on this spring and it was really effective last weekend.  We played some good teams this weekend, but we played hard and come out on top of all the matches.  Allie Griffin and Maragda Santillana were huge on the offensive side, and it was fun to see them playing so well."

The tournament was a homecoming for Carr who graduated from Wauwatosa East High School, located in the Milwaukee suburbs.

Much of CU's 2004 spring practice was spent on improving its offensive speed and jump serving ability. Coaches and players agree that the time spent is really showing dividens on the court.

"We took alot of time this spring to break down our offense, and I think that this was time well spent to get us going into next season," Carr said.

CU also played in a tournament in Bakersfield, Calif., on April 17. The Buffs went 3-1, defeating Fresno State, Pacific and Cal State-Bakersfield while dropping a match to Arizona.  Colorado head coach Pi'i Aiu said progress was made throughout spring drills.

"We played well (in Milwaukee) and a lot of things that we have worked on are starting to have an effect in matches. We've had a good spring in terms of what we are trying to include in our offense and we've got players who will be ready to play. We'll be excited to get going in the fall."

CU volleyball players will take the summer months off and are scheduled to report to campus on August 8, to prepare for the beginning of fall practice. The most improved team in the Big 12 last season in terms of wins, Colorado tied for third place in the conference and finished 21-10 overall, advancing to its 12th NCAA Tournament in 13 seasons.